Welcoming the panel Tuesday, following Memorial Day, MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace couldn't fathom why a Republican politician would be going after the military or suddenly opposing the military because they accept LGBTQ+, women, and people of color into the armed forces and reserves.
"It's not going to win him a general election, that is for sure. I think that the GOP has become farther and farther right. The middle seems to be gone," said Rieckhoff. He explained that it might be popular among the far right to attack any institution that is embracing equality. "I think it is a losing general election strategy."
Republicans complained in February that DeSantis was overstepping in his war against equality.
Wallace asked if the military was considered "woke," but Rieckhoff said it's only progressive in the sense that it is always evolving.
"We talked about this last week with regard to Tommy Tuberville," he continued. "It sounds like they want to create the Army of the confederacy. Yeah, the Army now allows in women, and it is no longer all white, and it is moving forward, and that seems to be what they are attacking. I think they are making a really big political miscalculation by attacking the military. They are not going after Joe Biden, they are going after the military and that is one of the few institutions that has a high popularity rating. I think they are continuing to drive independents away."
Retired US Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel Amy McGrath noted that the idea of a woke military "isn't a thing." She called it a shame to see a presidential candidate would do that.
"It actually hurts our military," she explained. "Diversity and inclusion efforts have been going on for the past like 30 plus years. I'm a product, as somebody who has been a fighter pilot as a woman. I'm a product of these efforts. What these guys want to do is go back to pre-1990 when women couldn't do some of these jobs in the military. It is crazy. And it actually hurts us because, you know what, our military exists to fight and win the nation's wars, and we should have the best people in those positions. And we got to be able to recruit from everybody, from all walks of life. And that is what these efforts that the Pentagon is doing and have been doing for years, that is what they are doing. And to bash that is really just crazy on DeSantis' part."
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Veteran accuses Ron DeSantis of trying to recreate the military of the confederacy